American Lung Association in Michigan launches program to help improve air quality

Courtesy: MGN Online

(WPBN/WGTU)-- To help improve indoor and outdoor air quality, the American Lung Association in Michigan will distribute more than $600,000 in vouchers to remove higher-polluting wood or coal burning appliances from homes.

It's all part of the Lower Peninsula of Michigan Woodstove Changeout Program.

The purpose of the Changeout Program is to improve indoor and outdoor air quality by replacing or improving inefficient, higher-polluting wood or coal-burning stoves or hydronic heaters with cleaner-burning, more energy-efficient heating appliances and technologies. The program aims to minimize the effects of particulate matter air emissions as well as other air pollutants in the Lower Peninsula of Michigan.

"This program will help improve air quality for the over 9 million residents of the Lower Peninsula while protecting their health and homes," says Barry Gottschalk, President and CEO of the American Lung Association of the Midland States. Particle pollution from wood smoke can cause coughing, wheezing, and asthma attacks. It can also increase symptoms in those suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). By assisting homeowners in upgrading to more efficient, newer appliances, the program will help prevent home heating fires, which are mainly caused by creosote buildup. It is also an opportunity to support local retail hearth and heating businesses partnering with the Lung Association in this effort.

Homeowners in the Lower Peninsula of Michigan who use a wood or coal burning appliance as a primary or significant source of heat can apply for a voucher for a cleaner burning, more energy-efficient heating appliance. The voucher can also apply to appliances used in a frequently used non-residential building such as a church, greenhouse, or school.

Vouchers will be granted in the amounts of:

  • $300 for a woodstove catalyst retrofit or replacement;
  • $400 for a EPA Qualified fireplace retrofit device (for open fireplaces);
  • $1000 for a EPA-certified freestanding woodstove or fireplace insert;
  • $2000 for a EPA-certified wood-pellet stove or new gas stove
  • $4000 for a EPA-certified hydronic heater or Energy Efficient gas furnace or boiler

Program participants will partner with one of the program's participating retailers to complete an application for a voucher. Once a voucher is issued, program participants will have 30 days to enter into a purchase agreement with the participating retailer. The retailer then installs the new appliance, renders the old appliance inoperable, and disposes of the old appliance properly.

For more program details, go to or call 1-800-LUNGUSA.

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